CURRENT ENVIRONMENTALLY-FRIENDLY SHOP FAVORITES
Primarily a sticker shop owner, but always a lifelong scrapbooker, I tend towards wanting to reuse and recycle (or repurpose) as often as possible. In running the shop I found myself using substantially more paper products than ever before. To keep the shop running, I have always tried to find resources that are both eco-friendly and cost effective.I thought I would share the current eco-friendly products I use to ship my stickers, bookmarks, and magnets to customers. I am sure there will be some changes along the way, but I will continue to update you as always.
I’ll start from the outside packaging and work my way on in. Some of these may be affiliate links, thank you for supporting small business.
RIGID MAILERS & LABELS
The rigid mailers make sure my packages arrive safely and I have not had a customer complaint yet. They are made from recycled goods and completely recyclable, but are also super sturdy and don’t bend at all. I have always used EcoEnclose for my rigid mailers. When I decided to switch to a label printer I was super excited to give their shipping labels a try. The backing on most shipping label rolls are not recyclable (even when the label and adhesive are) but with EcoEncolse, everything can go into curbside recycle bins. Edit: With the Moving Sale turnout (thanks guys!) I had just about run out of the EcoEnclose rigid mailers. Before I re-ordered, I checked out what my costs would be after the move to Hawaii, and the shipping fees went way up. So, I started looking into other options. For now, I have switched to these rigid mailers. I like them a lot! My favorite part is that they are actually completely blank, which allows me to use my custom branded stamps where I want.
Before opening the shop I did a lot of online research on how to protect the stickers from water damage in transit. Eventually, I found that I could use glassine bags as an alternative to plastic or cello bags. I know a lot of shops like the clear look and there are sort of eco-friendly versions, but it felt to me that glassine would be one step better for the environment. They are both biodegradable and recyclable. I thought that the appearance would bother me but I actually like the way the stickers look behind the frosted bags!
VELLUM & RECYCLABLE TISSUE PAPER
Now vellum, was a medium I discovered while planning my wedding, and I am SO happy there is a version that is eco-friendly. Most vellum is made with plasticized cotton, but if you look hard enough, you can find vellum made of vegetables. (Most vellum is recyclable, though.) Once I ran low on my vellum I started looking for other options and found this recycled tissue paper. It comes in a bunch of colors but I’m a sucker for black and white, so the spotted won out.Lots of places online market their tissue paper as recyclable but when I reached out about it, a lot of companies did admit that the ink they use to print patterns on the tissue paper makes it non-recyclable. That’s why I went with Paper Mart. Their tissue paper is made from recycled materials, compostable, and biodegradable. It is so much nicer knowing that when I ship it to customers, they can easily curbside recycle it.
BUSINESS CARDS & THANK YOU CARDS
I have always gotten my thank you cards and business cards from Moo because their quality is just incredible. I do pay a bit more for the cards made of t-shirt cutoffs but to me this is worth it. PLUS they are super sturdy and I love the way my designs print. Their printfinity feature was what lured me in originally but the whole order process (and honestly, their customer service) keep me coming back again and again. I also decided I wanted a slightly thinner square thank you card from now on so I gave GotPrint a try and I really like how they came out. They were printed on 100 lb. recycled matte paper that feels very nice, and with sustainable soy inks. Their order process is also quite simple. I won’t start sending these out until the shop re-opens but I am excited to see how well they do.
You want to feel good about the product you send out into the world, but also the packaging it arrives in. I know I will continue to grow and change things but for now, I am very happy with the eco-friendly options I have been able to utilize in the shop. I hope that those of you who do purchase stickers or other stationery can feel good about it as well. (And help me recycle and re-use as much as possible.)